Roger Scruton

Roger Scruton

About Roger Scruton

Sir Roger Scruton is one of the world’s leading conservative thinkers. In his nearly fifty books, he has explored the philosophical depths of human nature, politics, and culture. He is a visiting professor of philosophy at the University of Oxford and senior fellow at the Ethics and Public Policy Center. He is also a fellow of the Royal Society of Literature and a fellow of the British Academy. In 2016 Queen Elizabeth II knighted Sir Roger for his services to “philosophy, teaching, and public education.” Sir Roger's books include Conservatism: An Invitation to the Great Tradition (2018), Green Philosophy: How to Think Seriously About the Planet (2012), Political Philosophy: Arguments for Conservatism (2007) and Culture Counts: Faith and Feeling in a World Besieged (2007).

A Thing Called Civilization

By |2019-09-25T21:16:07-06:00September 25th, 2019|Categories: Roger Scruton, Western Civilization|

On September 19, 2019, at the fourteenth annual Gala for Western Civilization, the Intercollegiate Studies Institute presented Sir Roger Scruton with the Defender of Western Civilization award. Sir Roger gave these remarks on accepting the award. It is a great honor to be named Defender of Western Civilization for the year 2019 by ISI, an [...]

The Problem With Architectural “Genius”

By |2018-09-19T14:24:22-06:00September 19th, 2018|Categories: Architecture, Culture, Modernity|

The pursuit of genius in architecture is what has most contributed to the unstitching of our urban fabric, giving us those buildings in outlandish shapes and unsightly materials that take a chunk of the city and make it into somewhere else... Cooper Union New Academic Building For the truly great projects, architects are [...]

Sacred Truths in a Profane World

By |2019-05-30T11:27:31-06:00July 18th, 2018|Categories: Christianity, Culture, Homosexual Unions, Islam, Marriage, Religion, Roger Scruton, Truth|

One after another, the sacred spaces that our customs have protected are invaded and spoiled. That which has been assumed to be unquestionable, indeed protected from the questions that might profane it, is for that very reason subjected to question... In America and across Europe, the business of government has been detached from religious faith. This [...]

The Threat of Free Speech in the University

By |2019-03-05T13:29:24-06:00September 4th, 2017|Categories: Culture, Education, Featured, Free Speech, Modernity, Roger Scruton|

If a university stands for anything, surely it stands for that idea of truth, as a guiding light in our darkness and the source of real knowledge… Free speech in a university is a very different thing from free speech in Congress or Parliament, freedom of the press, or free speech in the street. Each [...]

The Virtue of Irrelevance

By |2017-04-13T12:10:32-06:00February 24th, 2017|Categories: Culture, Education, Featured, Music, Philosophy, Roger Scruton|

The old curriculum, with its emphasis on hard mathematics, dead languages, ancient history, and classical music, is often portrayed today as “irrelevant,” an offense to modern children, a way of belittling their world and their hopes for the future… How many writers, educators, and opinion formers, urgently wishing to convey the thoughts and feelings [...]

Why Modern Music Should Listen to the Past

By |2019-09-12T11:29:58-06:00December 31st, 2016|Categories: Culture, Featured, Music, Philosophy|

One can be modern without being avant-garde, and by instead thinking in the old musical way, in terms of grammatical sequences that linger in the ears and the memory of the listeners… Important composers, from Schoenberg and Stravinsky to Ligeti and Stockhausen, have been premiered in this place and before this audience. Along with [...]

Will Classical Music Resist the Assaults of the Avant-Garde?

By |2019-06-27T11:12:09-06:00October 17th, 2016|Categories: Culture, Music, Tradition, Western Civilization|

Surprised by Beauty: A Listener’s Guide to the Recovery of Modern Music, by Robert R. Reilly (Ignatius Press, 2016) Robert R. Reilly was the music critic for Crisis magazine for sixteen years, and is still reviewing concerts and operas for Ionarts. He is an assiduous follower of modern music for the concert hall, and has for [...]

Conservatism Means Conservation

By |2018-10-15T18:36:36-06:00July 17th, 2016|Categories: Beauty, Conservation, Conservatism, Environmentalism, Featured, Roger Scruton, Timeless Essays|

Today’s offering in our Timeless Essay series affords readers the opportunity to join Roger Scruton as he considers the conservative nature of environmentalism. —W. Winston Elliott III, Publisher Environmentalism has all the hallmarks of a left-wing cause: a class of victims (future generations), an enlightened vanguard who fights for them (the eco-warriors), powerful Philistines who [...]

Postmodern Music: Groans Wrapped in Mathematics

By |2016-06-17T14:50:23-06:00June 16th, 2016|Categories: Culture, Jazz, Modernity, Music, Opera, Roger Scruton|

Arnold Schoenberg In Gurrelieder, Verklärte Nacht, and Pelléas et Mélisandes, Arnold Schoenberg showed total mastery of tonality and of late romantic harmony, and these great works entered the repertoire. But by the time of the Piano Pieces, op. 11, Schoenberg was writing music which to many people no longer made sense, with melodic lines [...]

How Bad Philosophy Destroyed Good Music

By |2019-09-19T13:50:07-06:00February 2nd, 2016|Categories: Culture, Featured, Music, Philosophy, Roger Scruton|

In the past, our musical culture had secure foundations in the church, in the concert hall, and in the home. The common practice of tonal harmony united composers, performers, and listeners in a shared language, and people played instruments at home with an intimate sense of belonging to the music that they made, just as [...]

The Plague of Multiculturalism

By |2015-12-11T13:45:59-06:00October 25th, 2015|Categories: Culture, England, Featured, Roger Scruton, Russell Kirk|Tags: |

America’s British Culture, by Russell Kirk. (New Brunswick, NJ: Transaction Publishers, 1993) The word “culture” is used in many senses. Advocates of the multicultural curriculum cheerfully assume that they and their readers know exactly what is meant by such a thing, and that all would agree in recognizing the “monocultural” nature of our traditional education. [...]